GM Reveals Two-Mode Hybrid SUV Prices– Save the 'Slade

Frank Williams
by Frank Williams
gm reveals two mode hybrid suv prices save the slade

After inadvertently posting incorrect prices for their hybrid Tahoe and Yukon on the Internet, GM finally released the real sticker. The base prices [including destination charges] from a GM press release via Autobloggreen are: Chevrolet 2WD Tahoe – $50,490; GMC 2WD Yukon -$50,945 (I guess GMC hybrid badges are more expensive than Chevy's); Chevrolet 4WD Tahoe – $53,295; and GMC 4WD Yukon – $53,755. All these hybrid SUVs come well loaded, including a "tire inflater kit"– which gives you an idea of the games hybrid makers play and how GM expects these SUVs will be used. TrueDelta lists the price difference between a loaded Tahoe and a similarly equipped Escalade as $15K, so you can make an pretty good guess what the 'Slade hybrid will run. Autobloggreen is estimating a $3 – $4K hybrid premium over a comparably equipped 5.3L version of the Yukahoe, but that doesn't factor in the usual discounts and rebates piled on the gas E85 versions. So even with a claim of "the same city fuel economy as the 2008 Toyota Camry with the base four-cylinder engine," buyers will have to do a lot of driving to yield any hybrid-related savings. But the PC halo remains in place at all times.

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  • Johnson Johnson on Nov 15, 2007
    Those who need an SUV will likely benefit a whole lot more from a hybrid SUV than a sedan owner will benefit from a hybrid sedan. How exactly do you figure that? At least with a hybrid sedan like a Camry Hybrid you will get a REAL and useful improvement in reliability, fuel economy, and refinement. Reliability for the Two-Mode system isn't fully known yet because the system is not the same as the one used in commercial busses. While refinement may be improved along with fuel economy, tow ratings are reduced and so is the payload. Let's face it, the main reason people need full-size SUVs is to transport big families and tow big loads. The GM hybrid SUVs can only tow moderate loads (6000 - 6500) and that drops even more if you're carrying 8 adults inside. Fuel economy while towing also won't be great, and fuel economy will also suffer if you DO in fact have a big family and always lug around 8 people or if you carry lots of cargo. So looking at the main reasons people need full-size SUVs ... these hybrid Two-Modes do nothing to complement those reasons. You can get a hybrid Tahoe and Yukon and end up being dissapointed by the fuel economy when towing,when carrying 8 people, or just flat out being dissapointed it can't tow more than 6500lbs.
  • Paul Niedermeyer Paul Niedermeyer on Nov 15, 2007

    Frank, are you confident that AutoBloggreen's estimate of "about $3 to $4k premium" is reasonably accurate? Has anyone actually done a comparison of similarly equipped Tahoes? Seems a bit low. But as you said, even if it's true, all GM has to do is not offer incentives, and the premium becomes more like $8+k.

  • Frank Williams Frank Williams on Nov 15, 2007

    Paul, I ran the price of a regular Tahoe with the equipment listed in the press release through True Delta. The difference I got came to a little over $4K. Not everything on the hybrid was listed for the gas model, as some of it is unique to the hybrid version. I think they're being a bit optimistic, but they don't think they're too terribly far off. If you're comparing base sticker prices without equalizing equipment, the difference becomes about $17k.

  • Jthorner Jthorner on Nov 15, 2007

    "So looking at the main reasons people need full-size SUVs … these hybrid Two-Modes do nothing to complement those reasons. " First, I drive a four door four cylinder sedan for my daily driver, so don't think I am "one of those". That said, most people buy their vehicle for whatever the maximum use is they plan for it, yet most of the time it is doing simple one or two person commuter or grocery getter duties. Thus someone who has a speedboat that they take out a dozen or two times per year along with three or four friends and their gear might use the full capability of a Tahoe 5%-10% of the time it is on the road. However, the rest of the time it is schlepping kids to school, people to work, doing shopping trip duty and the like. Very few people who buy something like a Tahoe use it to it's maximum capability on a daily basis. The hybrid drive-train can dramatically improve efficiency a large part of the time the vehicle is in use.